Boater who died after falling into Lake Keowee identified


OCONEE Co., S.C. (WSPA) — A man was returning from a boat ride with his wife when he fell into Lake Keowee and later died.

Oconee Co. Coroner Karl Addis said in a news release that dispatch received a 9-1-1 call of a possible drowning around 9:30 p.m. Thursday on Lake Keowee near the 800 block of Treehaven Court.

Thomas Larry Payne, 71, of Treehaven Court in Seneca, had returned to their dock and fell into the lake while exiting the boat.

First responders recovered his body near the dock and provided life support.

He was taken to Oconee Memorial Hospital where he died later that night. 

The coroner says Payne died from a broken neck after he fell.

His death has been ruled accidental.

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